Norwin girls soccer players seek healthier trip through section schedule

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Tuesday, August 30, 2022 | 3:22 PM


Injuries took a toll on Norwin last year to the point where the girls soccer team rarely had the same set lineup on the field.

The inconsistency led to a pair of losses to upstart Latrobe — now a Class 3A team — and a second-place finish in Section 3-4A.

Norwin finished 13-5 after a 4-3 loss to Seneca Valley in the WPIAL quarterfinals and missed out on the PIAA playoffs for the second straight season.

With six starters returning, coach Diane Metzger hopes for a clean bill of health and a steady ride through the section schedule.

The key returnees are seniors Reagan Casper, Halle Holtzman and Ashley Ornowski; junior Evelyn Moore; and sophomores Julia Bursick and Lilah North.

Casper is a Maryland-Baltimore County commit, while Ornowski is headed to Penn State Behrend.

Sophomore Ava Brucker and freshman Nicole Bown will add depth to the lineup.

“Our strength is in our depth and experience,” Metzger said. “They’re a very skilled and talented group, and they are unselfish with the ball. We also have a number of returners who gave us some valuable minutes, even though they didn’t start.”

Norwin opened the season Monday with a 2-1 loss to Bethel Park. Moore had the lone score for the Knights, who watched Bethel Park score twice inside the final five minutes.

Metzger said ball movement and creating opportunities in formation will be keys to success in a tightened Class 4A.

“The team has improved upon its overall chemistry, and their willingness to give the ball up to whoever has a better shot is an example of that,” she said. “They have worked hard to better prepare over the summer.”

Metzger began to implement her unique system in her first season and thinks it is beginning to take root.

“Perhaps not quite fully, but it is getting much closer,” Metzger said. “Last year, I planted some seeds and watered them. This year those shallow roots are growing deeper. These girls have the goal of making this team feel like a family, and they have worked hard to accomplish that in many different ways. This singular focus has carried over into the way the team holds a formation and attacks and defends together.”

Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at bbeckner@triblive.com or via Twitter .

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